A wild scoop: A GOP lawmaker has been trying to travel to *Taliban-controlled Afghanistan* in a rogue evacuation mission despite efforts by the Pentagon & State Dept to discourage him. Officials are unsure of his current whereabouts. From @tylerpager & me https://t.co/MpieNxGNTU
— John Hudson (@John_Hudson) August 31, 2021
Somebody tell the Erroll Flynn Twins (Reps. Moulton / Meijer) what they’ve inspired:
The call to the U.S. ambassador to Tajikistan came in Monday. On the line, two U.S. officials said, was Rep. Markwayne Mullin (R-Okla.) with an unusual and urgent request: He needed assistance in transporting a huge amount of cash into the country, saying he was going to neighboring Afghanistan to rescue five American citizens, a woman and her four children, stuck in the country. They planned to hire a helicopter for the effort.
Mullin told the embassy that he planned to fly from Tblisi, Georgia, into Tajikistan’s capital, Dushanbe, in the next few hours and needed the top diplomat’s help, according to the two U.S. officials familiar with the incident, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to disclose private conversations about a sensitive matter.
The answer was no. Embassy officials told Mullin they could not assist him in skirting Tajikistan’s laws on cash limits on his way to visiting one of the most dangerous places on earth.
Mullin was outraged by the response, the officials said — threatening U.S. ambassador John Mark Pommersheim and embassy staff and demanding to know the name of staff members he was speaking with.
The episode marked Mullin’s second attempt to travel to Afghanistan in as many weeks for an unauthorized evacuation effort despite the perilous security environment. Last week, Mullin traveled to Greece and asked the Department of Defense for permission to visit Kabul. The Pentagon denied Mullin’s request, an administration official said.
Mullin’s behavior has alarmed top U.S. officials who say he has gone to extraordinary lengths to defy U.S. warnings. The attempt follows an unauthorized trip to Afghanistan by Reps. Seth Moulton (D-Mass) and Peter Meijer (R-Mich.) last week, which Pentagon and State Department officials criticized as a public relations stunt that sapped government resources during a national-security crisis.
As of late Tuesday, U.S. officials said they were unsure of Mullin’s location. Mullin’s office did not respond to multiple requests for comment…
Mullin, 44, grew up in Stilwell, Okla., where he was a standout wrestler and earned a scholarship to Missouri Valley College. Injuries derailed his athletic career, and at age 20, he took over his father’s plumbing business. He was also briefly a professional mixed martial arts fighter, and after being elected to Congress in 2012, he became known on the Hill for leading intense workout classes. A member of the conservative Republican Study Committee, Mullin voted against the certification of the 2020 election results.
Unlike Moulton and Meijer, Mullin did not serve in the U.S. military. He has been an outspoken critic of the Biden administration’s exit from Afghanistan…
CD and Senior Advisor for [Dem] Jim Himes:
Markwayne used to constantly wander into our legislative office because the door was next to his personal office and he got confused. Not the guy I would choose for this particular op.
— Patrick Malone (@patrickmorland) September 1, 2021
Dunno, Mr. Malone — Mullin might not be the most useful choice, but he’s certainly representative of his particular party’s stance here…